Not changing the air filter will cause certain problems such as reducing the car’s mileage and reducing the engine’s horsepower. Reducing the flow of air to the engine with a dirty, clogged air filter creates a restriction of airflow to the engine. This restriction of air makes the gas powered engine work harder causing it to burn more gas. Therefore keeping up with your air filter replacement will help keep gas costs to a minimum as well.
With the technology available today, many auto parts providers are offering a low restriction air filter that allow for a greater flow of air directly to the engine. This immediately increases the horsepower by 5-10 horsepower. These high performance air filters are thinner and do not provide as great of an air cleaning aspect as regular standard air filters provide. For that reason, high performance air filters should be used only for specific reasons when there is a need or desire for increased, high performance horsepower increase.
If your vehicle is an older vehicle, it will probably be a carburetor style engine. The air filter in this style engine is a donut shaped piece about as big around as a standard dinner plate. These air filers are generally located on the top of the car’s engine under a round black metal pan held in place by a wing nut.
Newer vehicles no longer have a carburetor and the air filter is generally a square piece held in place by a black plastic box held down by clamps. Changing either of these style air filters is very easy to accomplish. The air filter is not held in place by any clamps or screws once the actual case is opened. Simply open the case, remove the actual air filter and place the new air filter in the space where the old air filter was housed.
Air filters can generally be purchased at any auto parts store. A chart will be provided to help you decide which one to purchase for your specific vehicle.
Standard air filters will cost between $3 and as much as $30, depending on the make and model of the vehicle and the quality of the air filter. Air filter or oil change specialists or other service centers may run slightly more because of the labor charges.